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Frequently Asked Questions

Eligibility

Who can apply for a donation?

The Health Care Provider must be traveling outside of the U.S. on short-term charitable medical trips to treat indigent patients and must agree to and comply with all of the terms of our online Agreement. The one exception is our Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery Program where surgeries for indigent patients are performed in the U.S.

Do I need a medical license to request products?

  • The Health Care Provider must have a valid U.S. license to practice and prescribe independently and without supervision in order to request prescription medicines and/or products requiring a specific level of training to use.
  • We can only donate to you those products that you are qualified to use in the U.S. For example, if you are not authorized in the U.S. to start an IV, we are not able to donate IV sets to you even though they are “non-prescription.”
  • If you do not have a license to practice and prescribe without supervision and no one traveling with you does, you may request non-prescription products.

Is my medical license from a country other than the U.S. acceptable?

Although we realize that medical professionals from other countries may be highly-qualified, the Health Care Provider must have a valid U.S. license to practice and prescribe without supervision in order to request prescription medicines and/or products requiring a specific level of training to use.

Do I need to be licensed to practice and prescribe without supervision?

In order to receive Rx items from Americares the requesting health care provider must have a valid U.S. license to practice and prescribe independently.

Health care providers such as Physician Assistants’ and advanced nurses’ licenses vary by state. Please be sure when ordering Rx products that your state license allows for independent practice and prescriptive rights. You are not eligible to receive Rx products if you have a collaborative agreement and/or require supervision from a physician.

If your practicing and/or prescribing powers require supervision, please have someone else on the team who does not require supervision apply for the donation instead. Or you can request OTC products in your own name.

What products can I request if I am not licensed to prescribe without supervision?

Anyone can request non-prescription products and/or supplies that do not require a specific level of training to use. However, you must still be going on the trip and meet all other Program guidelines.

Do I need to be going on the trip to request products?

The Health Care Provider must be traveling to the destination country and is responsible for accounting for the disposition of all donated products in accordance with your application. We cannot donate products to be given to a third party or to be shipped overseas for use by third parties. However, a Primary Contact can complete the application on behalf of the Health Care Provider. The Primary Contact does not need to be going on the trip.

Can I request a donation for use in the United States?

No, with the exception of our Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery Program, all products donated through our Medical Outreach Program must leave the United States. To learn more about our US Access Program for Safety Net Partners in the U.S. and our Patient Assistance Program for individual U.S. patients, please click here.

Creating a Login

Who is the Health Care Provider?

  • The Health Care Provider is the person in whose name the donation is being made. For charitable trips abroad, the Health Care Provider must be personally traveling to the destination country and must account for the disposition of the donated products.
  • If prescription products or products requiring a specific level of training to use are being requested, the Health Care Provider must have a current U.S. license to practice and prescribe and/or use those products independently and without supervision.
  • Anyone requesting non-prescription products and/or supplies that do not require a specific level of training to use is considered to be the Health Care Provider. However, you must still be going on the trip and must meet all other Program guidelines.

Do I need to use the Health Care Provider’s email address as the User ID?

  • Yes, all account information is tied to the Health Care Provider’s name and email address. Using another email address for the User ID will delay approval of the application.
  • If you are completing the application on behalf of the Health Care Provider, you will be able to provide your own contact information later as the Primary Contact and will be copied on subsequent emails.

Will I receive a confirmation of my User ID and password?

An automated email will be sent to the Health Care Provider confirming the User ID and password. This email does not go to the Primary Contact.

What should I do if I forgot my password?

Click on the Forgot password link on the login page. Please note, however, that the password reminder will be sent to the Health Care Provider’s email address only. If you are the Primary Contact, you will need to contact the Health Care Provider for the password.

How do I change my User ID or password?

If it is necessary to change the Health Care Provider’s email address or password, please email your Americares staff person directly, if known, or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org.

Can I complete the application on behalf of the Health Care Provider?

Yes, with the Health Care Provider’s permission, someone else can complete the application on his or her behalf. That person is then considered to be the Primary Contact and should provide his/her own contact information in the Primary Contact section of the application.

Conditions for the Use of Donated Products

Where can donated products be used?

All products donated by Americares must be used outside of the United States to treat indigent patients. All donated products must leave the U.S. and may not be re-exported to the U.S.

Who can be treated with or benefit from donated products?

All products donated by Americares must be used for indigent patients only, must be distributed free of charge, and no nominal patient or service fees can be charged for our donated products.

Do I need to be licensed to practice medicine in my destination country?

It is your responsibility to be familiar with and to comply with all medical practice requirements for your destination country.

Who can dispense products in the destination country?

Products requiring a prescription can be dispensed only by U.S.-licensed or locally-licensed medical professionals.

Can I or the destination facility charge nominal fees for patient visits?

If nominal fees are charged for patient visits, service access or like fees for service, these fees cannot include charges for products donated by Americares. Furthermore,no patient can be deprived of access to Americares donated products because of his/her inability to pay.

Can my faith-based group receive a donation?

  • Yes, as long as our products are distributed without being affected by or conditioned upon gender, race or the articulation of any religious or political belief, the submission to religious or political counseling or the attendance at any religious or political activity.
  • Americares and our corporate and financial donors provide support for all people around the world, irrespective of race, religion or political belief. We realize that many groups making charitable medical trips are faith based, but please note that products donated by Americares are to be used for medical purposes only and not to advance any religious or political agenda.
  • In countries where proselytizing is illegal, association of our donated products with religious activity can jeopardize our own work there. If you are unclear whether your planned trip activities will meet our requirements, please email your Americares staff person directly, if known, or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org.

What should I do with products not used up on the trip?

  • It is important that products donated for a specific country stay in that country.
  • Excess donated product cannot be brought back to the U.S.
  • Any excess product remaining at the end of your trip should be distributed to local medical facilities with qualified medical personnel who will continue to abide by the terms of our Agreement and will ensure that 1) the products are distributed free of charge to indigent patients prior to expiration, that 2) expired products will not be distributed but will be properly destroyed in accordance with local regulations and that 3) no products will be sold or exchanged. If you have doubts about these conditions being met, products must be destroyed in accordance with local regulations.

Can I request a donation for use in the United States?

No, with the exception of our Zimmer Biomet U.S Charitable Surgery Program all products donated through our Medical Outreach Program must leave the United States. To learn more about our US Access Program for Safety Net Partners in the U.S and our Patient Assistance Program for individual U.S patients, please click here to go to the Americares website.

The Application Process

How do I apply for products the first time?

  • Either Log in or click on the Create Account button from the Medical Outreach homepage.
  • Create your login account (see Creating a Login)
  • Enter the required information for the Health Care Provider (see Who is the Health Care Provider under Creating a Login).
  • Enter your state license information if applicable.
  • Enter the required information for Primary Contact if different from the Health Care Provider’s.
  • Enter trip information (see Trip Information for details).

Enter Shipping Information. Please follow instructions with regard to this page as we will not ship to a residential address and will only ship Rx products to a licensed medical facility. We vet all shipping addresses so not following these instructions will cause a delay in processing your request.

See Shipping and Logistics if you need to change a shipping address after it has been submitted.

  • Read carefully the terms of our Agreement. If the Primary Contact is completing the application on behalf of the Health Care Provider, it is your obligation to ensure that the Health Care Provider has read and agrees to these terms. A copy of the Agreement will be emailed to the Health Care Provider and the Primary Contact for your reference. Each new trip requires a separate Agreement.
  • When you use the online application for the first time, you will need to Submit Your Application for approval. Although we try to approve applications as quickly as possible, it may take a few business days during especially busy times. The Health Care Provider and Primary Contact will receive an automated email alerting you that the application has been approved.
  • Once your application has been approved, you can return to the website, log in and go directly to the Order Products tab to start requesting products (see Requesting Products).

How do I apply for Zimmer Biomet products for a U.S. charitable surgery?

Because of the unique aspect of this donation program a separate application process is required to request Zimmer Biomet products for a U.S. charitable surgery. Please visit Zimmer Biomet  to access the application and see the FAQ section further down on Zimmer Biomet products.

How far in advance should I apply for a donation?

Although we process requests as quickly as possible, we prefer that you contact us a minimum of 2-3 weeks before you need to have the products in hand. We often fulfill requests with less notice but reserve the right to refuse them if we deem there is not enough staff time and/or shipping time to complete them.

How far in advance should I apply for a special-request product donation?

We have a limited number of generous corporate donors who do consider special requests for their products, based on availability. The more lead time you can give us for a special request the better. Some require several months to fulfill.

I’ve received a prior donation from Americares. Do I need to apply again?

Because our donations are trip-specific, we need a new application for each trip. However, your contact information and previous trip information is saved under ‘My Account’.

What should I do if I have a question about or problem with the application?

Please email your Americares staff person directly, if known, or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org. Please describe the problem and if you are receiving an error message, please provide a print screen of it if possible.

Do I need to submit a signed copy of the application?

  • No, by clicking on the required box at the bottom of our Agreement, you have electronically indicated your understanding and acceptance of the terms of our program.
  • If you are the Primary Contact completing the application for the Health Care Provider you are confirming that the Health Care Provider has read and agrees to the terms of the Agreement. An automated email containing the terms of the Agreement will be sent to both the Health Care Provider and the Primary Contact.

What should I do if my state no longer issues a hard copy of my medical license?

License information is now available online to anyone and everyone. Since the universe of people who have access to a hard copy of your current state medical license is much smaller, we ask for a copy as documentation that you are aware a request is being made in your name. If your state no longer provides a hard copy medical license, please send us a copy of your current state driver’s license or other government-issued ID. Please do not submit Internet verifications in lieu of the license itself as we verify all licenses online ourselves.

Is there a charge for a medical donation?

No, our donations are free, including regular shipping. However, as a non-profit organization we rely wholly on donations for our funding, so we urge you to consider a contribution of $300 or more to help offset the costs of providing this program. Neither the amount nor the donation itself is obligatory but thank you for considering supporting our program. All donations are tax-deductible and can be made over our secure website by clicking on the DONATE button within the application once you submit your cart, or on the Medical Outreach landing page on the navigation bar.

Available Products

How do I see what products you have available to donate?

  • Click on What’s Available on the Medical Outreach Program Homepage to see our current inventory.
  • When reviewing available inventory, please note product expiration dates. We only donate products that have at least two months’ dating remaining upon your arrival in your destination country. When you request items for your trip, you will only see products with at least that minimum. However, in the Homepage inventory, you are seeing all available products regardless of expiration dating.

What kinds of products do you donate?

We rely on donations from major corporations for the products we provide. As a result, our inventory varies and changes rapidly. We receive a variety of products, ranging from antibiotics and high blood pressure medications to analgesics, vitamins and topical applications, but there is no guarantee that we will have a particular product on hand when you make your request.

What if I don’t see what I need in your inventory?

In addition to the products we receive from ad hoc donations, we also have the ability to special-request products from a very limited number of donors based on availability. If you are looking for products other than what is available in our current inventory, please email your needs list to your Medical Outreach contact, if known, or to MOPSpecialrequest@americares.org. We will respond to your email to let you know what products, if any, we might be able to obtain for you.

A corporation told me to contact you. Do you have their products available to donate?

We work with many generous corporate donors who graciously supply the products that we make available to you. Many make ad hoc donations to Americares. Some allow us to special-request products based on availability, while others do not. The Customer Service people at many of the corporations we work with have standard instructions to refer all requests for their products to Americares. It is not possible for them to know what products we currently have in inventory or what products we may or may not be able to provide for you. If you don’t see a specific product in our current inventory, please email your needs list to your Medical Outreach contact, if known, or to MOPSpecialRequest@Americares.org. We will respond to your email to let you know what products, if any, we might be able to obtain for you.

What is the expiration dating on the products you donate?

  • Typical dating for our products is 6-9 months until expiration, although we do usually have some longer-dated products. Donated products will have expiration dating of a minimum of two months upon your arrival in your destination country.
  • Many countries require longer dating. It is up to you to know what the expiration dating requirements are for your destination country and to indicate in the online application how many months’ dating you need. When selecting products for your trip, you will see only those items that meet your stated expiration dating requirements.

What should I consider when choosing products?

  • Be sure that the quantity of products you request can be used up before expiration, either during your trip or by local medical facilities with qualified medical personnel after you leave.
  • Be sure that you are familiar with the expiration dating requirements of your destination country.
  • Please pay attention to the total weight of the products you are requesting to make sure you will be able to transport them to your destination country under airline guidelines.
  • Please also give careful consideration to extenuating factors such as whether there will be an on-going supply of products for chronic ailments, the availability of follow-up care and the degree of antibiotic resistance in the area to which you are traveling.

Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery Program

What is the Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery Program?

Americares processes donations of Zimmer Biomet products for charitable surgeries undertaken in the United States.  The patients must be deemed indigent and qualify for charitable assistance based on the standards used by the hospital in which the surgery will be performed. Because of the unique aspects of this donation program, there is a separate application process. Please read the following frequently asked questions for details about the Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery Program and then click here to access the application.

Are there limits on what Zimmer Biomet products I can request?

Zimmer Biomet is generous in their support of this program, but resources are finite. In order to ensure that we are able to honor as many requests as possible, we generally limit requests for U.S. charitable surgeries to two per year per surgeon/medical facility.

How do I request Zimmer Biomet products for my U.S. charitable surgery?

  • Please read the following details about the Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery Program and then use the Zimmer Biomet link to access the application.
  • Download and complete the Zimmer Biomet U.S. Charitable Surgery application (we do not currently have an online application for U.S. charitable surgeries).
  • Read the application carefully, follow the instructions for completing the Inventory Request Form and fax or email the completed forms to Americares along with a copy of your current state medical license or government-issued ID. Please be aware that submission of an incomplete form will delay processing.

What qualifies a U.S. surgery for a Zimmer Biomet product donation?

  • The patient must be indigent and uninsured. Although the patient does not need to have applied to the hospital/medical facility for assistance, s/he must meet the qualifications for charitable assistance based on the standards of the hospital/medical facility where the surgery will take place.
  • The surgeon must be performing the surgery at no cost to the patient.
  • By signing the agreement, the surgeon is confirming that the above two qualifications have been met.

How do I complete the Inventory Request Form for my U.S. charitable surgery?

  • Americares does not provide any products for U.S. charitable surgeries. The Zimmer Biomet representative (or surgeon/medical facility) is responsible for bringing all of the necessary products and instrumentation to the operating room, just as s/he would for a commercial surgery.
  • The Inventory Request Form provides an estimation of the resources anticipated for the proposed surgery. Substitutions for sizes can be made in the OR, so please list only one product number for each component you anticipate using for the surgery, not all of the several options you plan to have in the OR. Please enter complete product numbers, using a representative size (do not use “xx” in the product number).

What happens after I submit the application for my U.S. charitable surgery?

We review the completed application and assuming there are no questions/problems, we will email to you a list of products that have been pre-approved as well as instructions for what to do after the surgery has taken place.

What happens after my U.S. charitable surgery has taken place?

After the surgery, a copy of the “sticker list” from the OR signed by the surgeon should be faxed or emailed to Americares. A clear cell phone photo is acceptable, but it is important that the patient sticker showing the surgeon’s name and the date the surgery took place be included. Although a copy of the sales invoice generated after the surgery is welcome, it is not a substitution for the actual list from the OR which we need to document that the surgery took place as planned. Furthermore, please do not provide Americares with specific patient information other than gender and as requested on the application.

We will review the sticker list, and assuming there are no major unexplained discrepancies, we instruct Zimmer Biomet to process the charitable donation for those products.

We are not involved with Zimmer Biomet’s internal inventory or accounting procedures, but we understand that you should NOT do a billing. If you need a restock after the surgery, call Distribution Planning and tell them you are waiting for Zimmer Biomet to do the billing and you need a restock. They should allow that. If not, or if you have any other questions about the inventory and accounting procedures, please contact the corporate offices at Zimmer Biomet.

Please use the Zimmer Biomet link to start the application process involving Zimmer Biomet products for U.S. charitable surgery requests.

Trip Information

Can I apply for more than one trip?

  • Yes, there is an Add a New Trip button that will allow you to enter information for another trip when you already have a current trip application in progress. However, you may only enter one trip when you first set up your account. Once your initial online application has been approved, you will be able to enter another one.
  • If you have more than one trip in progress, click on Order Products link on your dashboard and then choose the trip you are currently requesting products for.

What if I am going to more than one country on the same trip?

This is considered an exception to our donation program so please contact your Medical Outreach contact, if known, or email medicaloutreach@americares.org so that we can discuss your options.

How far in advance do I need to submit a request?

We process requests as quickly as possible, but we prefer that you allow a minimum of 2-3 weeks before you need to have the products in hand. We often fulfill requests with less notice but reserve the right to refuse them if we deem there is not enough staff time and/or shipping time to complete them.

What is the Needs-By date?

The Needs-By Date is the absolute latest date you can receive products, not the date you would like to receive products. We use it to determine whether there is enough time to process and ship your request.

What should I enter for my Organization?

  • Although we are donating to the Health Care Provider individually, not the organization s/he may be affiliated with, we do like to know if you are traveling with a group of any sort. The organization could be a non-profit, your church, your school, a group of healthcare providers from your hospital or office, etc.
  • Please enter the name accurately, using information from the organization’s website, if applicable. Please only use None if you are traveling alone or your group truly has no affiliation that joins you together.

What are my Expiration Dating Requirements to Enter the Country?

  • Donated products will have expiration dating of a minimum of two months after your arrival in your destination country. However, many countries require longer dating. It is up to you to know what the expiration dating requirements are for your destination country and to indicate in the online application how many months’ dating you need upon arrival in your destination country.
  • Dating requirements can change frequently and without notice. Check country or consulate websites and/or contact the Ministry of Health for your destination country to learn their requirements.

What do I put for Treatment Location if I am not providing care at a medical facility?

If you are not providing care at a medical facility, please be very specific about where you will be using our products. We need as much information about where you plan to use our products as possible, including where and with whom you intend to leave any unused donated products. Any excess product remaining at the end of your trip should only be distributed to local medical facilities with qualified medical personnel who will continue to abide by the terms of our Agreement.

What if I am going to use products in more than one Treatment Location?

You can use the Add Treatment Location button to add additional treatment locations. Use the Remove button to remove a location.

Requesting Products

How many donations can my group or I request?

Within reason, you may request products multiple times per year and more than once per trip. However, we ask that only one Health Care Provider apply per trip in order to coordinate the group’s overall request and to avoid duplication. In addition, because of the limits of our staff time and inventory, we reserve the right to limit excessive requests.

What are the features of the Order Products tab?

  • The Trip Name appears under Select Trip to Order. If you have more than one active trip, a list of upcoming trips will appear. Click on the trip for which you are currently requesting products.
  • The shopping cart icon shows the cumulative weight of products in your cart. We have a 300 lb. max weight limit per trip. Clicking on the icon will take you to the Shopping Cart. Click on the Submit Order button once you have finished adding products to your cart.
  • You cannot submit an empty cart, so we have a feature that will allow you to move forward in instances where we are requesting products for you that are not in our own inventory. The Virtual Pallet blue button at the bottom of the inventory is to be clicked ONLY if you were instructed to by a Medical Outreach Representative. If you have contacted us about a special-request, we may have instructed you to click this box. This adds a special-request line item to your cart. If you are only requesting the special-request item, clicking on this button will take you to the Shopping Cart where you can click on the SUBMIT ORDER button.

What does Cases Available mean?

The Case Limit column indicates the maximum number of cases of that product that you can request. As you add cases of that product to your cart, the Case Limit number will decrease accordingly.

What is a case of product?

We ship products out to you exactly as they come to us from the manufacturer or distributor, so a case is in most instances a full shipping box of product as described on the inventory. The inventory will tell you how many units per case (i.e., how many bottles, tubes, blister packs, etc.) and what is in each unit (how many pills, capsules, milligrams, milliliters, etc.)

What does UPC stand for?

UPC is short for units per case, i.e., how many bottles, tubes, blister packs, etc. are in each case. The contents of each unit are shown in the product description. For example, RANITIDINE HYDROCHLORIDE 300MG TABLET 30`S has thirty 300mg tablets per unit. This product has a UPC of 96, so there are 96 units with 30 tablets per unit in each case.

Can I request less than a full case?

We only donate by the case as it comes to us from the product donor, although we do occasionally have smaller partial cases on the inventory list because they shipped to us that way. However, we are not able to break down cases to donate by the individual unit (bottle, vial, tube, etc.)

How many products can I request per donation?

Because there are so many product variables, we don’t have a set limit for how many cases of product you can request. However, a typical donation is 15-30 products, fewer than 50 cases (some products have cases limits greater than one) and total weight less than 300 lbs.

How do I add a product to my Shopping Cart?

Enter the number of cases desired (up to the stated Case Limit) next to the product you are requesting and click the Add button.

How do I submit my Cart?

  • Click on the shopping cart icon at the top of the inventory page, which will take you to the shopping cart page.
  • In this screen, you can update items in your cart (adding and removing individual items) and you can also remove all cases of a particular product by clicking on remove next to that item.
  • You can return to the inventory from the shopping cart screen by clicking on the Continue Shopping button.
  • When you have made all desired changes, click on Submit Order to submit your cart to us.

How long can I wait to submit my Cart?

  • Your cart will automatically empty in three days if there has been no activity in it so as not to tie up our fast-moving inventory in inactive carts.
  • The Health Care Provider and the Primary Contact will receive automated emails before the cart will empty reminding you to submit it.
  • Once a cart has emptied, it cannot be retrieved, and you will need to start a new one.
  • How will I know if my Cart has been successfully submitted?
  • The Health Care Provider and the Primary Contact will receive an automated email confirming that your Order has been submitted.
  • Please review carefully and let us know immediately of any changes, especially to the shipping address, sending an email to your Medical Outreach contact, if known, or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org. Include “Urgent-Shipping Address Change” in the subject line. We try to process requests very quickly, so please do not delay.

Can I submit more than one Cart for the same trip?

  • Yes, you can order more than once for the same trip. However, subsequent orders should be for products that were not available previously, rather than as an opportunity to double up on products for which you have already requested the case limit.
  • If your request exceeds our guidelines, we will contact you, however this will hold up processing your order..

Shipping and Logistics

Can you ship my medical donation to a residential address?

No, we do not ship to residential addresses. All donations must be shipped to a business address. Prescription product donations must be shipped to a licensed medical office or health care facility. You are responsible for their safe receipt, oversight and use per Agreement terms.

Can I change the shipping address or ship to more than one address in the U.S.?

  • Yes. If you need to make an address change to a submitted Order, send an email to your Medical Outreach contact, if known, or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org. Include “Urgent-Shipping Address Change” in the subject line. We try to process requests very quickly, so please do not delay.
  • If you want to ship products to a second address, please start a separate cart for those items, but do not submit it until you receive confirmation from us that we have the new address information. Otherwise, we might ship it before you have a chance to contact us. Then email your Medical Outreach contact, if known, or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org and provide the complete shipping address including the contact person’s name, telephone number and email address.
  • Once you receive confirmation that we have the new address information, you can submit the cart and we will change the address.

How will I know when my products have shipped?

  • The Health Care Provider, Primary Contact and Shipping Contact (if different) will receive an automated email when your shipment leaves our warehouse. The email will contain the tracking numbers, manifest and a Customs letter.
  • When the shipment arrives, let us know by accessing the Detailed Confirmation of Receipt (DCOR) which is found on your dashboard. See ‘Do I need to acknowledge receipt of my shipment?’ under Reporting Requirements, which details how to acknowledge receipt of the donations.

How long does it take to receive my requested product?

Once we receive your completed application, we normally process your request within a few days. We will ship by ground courier from our warehouse in Connecticut. Your order will leave our warehouse based on the date you need to receive products prior to your trip, please be accurate as you calculate this need by date. When shipped, you will receive email notification so that you can anticipate its arrival.

Can you ship my medical donation to my destination country?

No, we only ship within the 50 United States. You are responsible for getting the products to the destination country and knowing what the airline and Customs requirements are for that country.

Can I ship my medical donation to my destination country?

Changes in airline regulations have made it more difficult to carry certain products as part of your luggage, and we realize that it is sometimes necessary to ship supplies in advance of your trip. However, if you are shipping your products, you must still be personally traveling to the destination country to oversee their use. We do not donate products to be shipped for use by third parties.

How do I comply with all U.S. government regulations?

It is your responsibility to ensure that products donated by Americares will be exported from the United States in strict compliance with all relevant laws and regulations, including but not limited to obtaining and providing any necessary export licenses for countries that require them and ensuring that no product will knowingly be provided to any individual or entity that commits, attempts to commit, advocates, facilitates or participates in terrorist acts.

What about airline restrictions and Customs?

Please consult your airline and the destination country consulate and/or Ministry of Health or their websites for specific guidelines. Some countries have product dating restrictions or may require prior approval of the products you intend to bring. When we process your shipment, we will provide you with a manifest listing the donated products and a letter stating that they have been donated for charitable use only. If products are confiscated by the airline or Customs, please notify us as soon as possible.

Can I return a donation after it has been sent? Can I give it to someone else?

If your trip is cancelled or delayed, please let us know immediately so that we can arrange for the disposition of the donated products. Donated products may not be given to other groups or taken to other countries without our prior permission. Donated products may not be given to clinics in the U.S. If you need to return a product for any reason, please contact your Medical Outreach contact, or email medicaloutreach@americares.org first.

What should I do with products not used up on the trip?

As specified in your Agreement, all products will be used in the destination country in accordance with their labeling guidelines and manufacturers’ recommendations and distributed prior to the expiration date. If there are any excess, non-expired products remaining at the end of your trip, they should be distributed to local medical facilities with qualified medical personnel capable of distributing them without charge to populations in need. Expired products must not be distributed regardless of perceived efficacy. If any excess products left behind after your trip subsequently expire, they should be destroyed in accordance with the standard procedures of the destination country. Products may not be re-exported back to the United States. Product taken to another country is only permitted if pre-approved by a Medical Outreach representative. Reach out to your Medical Outreach contact or email us at medicaloutreach@americares.org to discuss these exceptions.

Reporting Requirements

Do I need to acknowledge receipt of my shipment?

  • Yes, once your order has shipped, you will see it appear on your dashboard under the section, “Shipped orders needing confirmation”.
  • Click on the order and confirm the number of cases received.  If you have not received all cases that appear on the list provided, use the tracking information. Please open all boxes before reporting anything missing. Our warehouse staff often packs smaller items into a larger box when shipping.
  • If tracking indicates all cases have been delivered, and there is a discrepancy, indicate so via this online document. Key in the actual number of cases received per item. Use the Notes to indicate if there was a problem with regard to the condition of the cases upon arrival.

Does Americares’ require follow-up information on my donated products and trip?

  • Yes. Within a month of your return, you must provide us with an online Trip Report summarizing the number of patients served, the administration of the donated products, any adverse reactions to the donated products and the disposition of any unused or damaged donated products. Your assistance in providing complete and accurate information is essential to the success of the Medical Outreach Program.
  • Within one month of your return, you will receive an automated reminder that your Trip Report is due. Failure to submit the required follow-up information will delay and may jeopardize future participation in this program.
  • To access your Trip Report, log into your account and go to your Dashboard. You will see your trip name under the Trip Report section of your dashboard. Click on the Trip Name and enter all required information. When the report is complete, click Submit.
  • Please note that you cannot access your Trip Report until after your departure date for that trip. You also cannot save information into the Trip Report temporarily, so please be prepared to complete it in its entirety when you start it.
  • The Trip Report covers all products provided for that trip regardless of the number of shipments that may represent.

What do I do if my trip is cancelled or delayed?

If your trip is cancelled or delayed for any reason, notify us immediately at medicaloutreach@americares.org. We will contact you to discuss your situation and options. As a rule, if you have no revised departure date or your revised departure date is more than six months from your original departure date, we will need to have all donated products returned to Americares for destruction.

Please contact us and we will walk you through our guidelines. We are accountable to ourselves and to our Donors with regard to the oversight of the donated product so it’s important that you notify us as soon as you know of your change of trip plans.

What information is required in the Trip Report?

The following are some questions asked in the Trip Report:

  • Total # of patients seen
  • How many surgeries were performed?
  • What were the most common conditions treated?
  • Were there any adverse reactions to the donated products? If yes, please describe.
  • Were any products disallowed by the airlines or Customs? If yes, please list those products and include the current status.
  • Were any products damaged or destroyed either in transit or during the trip? If yes, please list those products.
  • Were any products unused at the end of the trip? If yes, please list those products and provide name & location of the in-country health care provider, organization and/or facility to whom unused products were donated for charitable use.
  • Do you or does your organization make repeated trips to this facility?
  • If your team conducted health care provider training, about how many people were trained?
  • If your team conducted patient education sessions, about how many people were educated?
  • Describe the impact that the Americares donated products had on your ability to provide health care services and how your patients were helped.
  • Tell us about any products that were particularly useful to you.
  • Share a story about one of your patients describing how the Americares donated products made a positive difference in his or her life.
  • Use the photo upload button to share a picture of this patient, if available, along with a photo release.
  • After reviewing our photo guidelines, please upload up to 10 or your best high-resolution digital photos and accompany each with a photo release.

What are your photo guidelines?

When taking photos for Americares it is best to take high-resolution digital photos, which should be in jpeg format and at least 1 megabyte in size. You can upload photos to your Trip Report once you return home or email us your best photos (up to 10) to medicaloutreach@americares.org with details regarding each photo. Please be sure to include the photo release forms when uploading/emailing us the photos and be specific with regard to which release refers to which photo.

Photo releases

We ask that you take Americares photo release forms with you on your trip. Please ask patients to sign our release form acknowledging their consent. When photographing pediatric patients, a parent or legal guardian must sign on behalf of the child. Americares photo release forms are available in various languages. Please access them via the Photo Release link on the Medical Outreach login page or reach out to us at medicaloutreach@americares.org.

To read more about taking great photos, please visit our Photo Guidelines.

What do I do if a patient experiences an Adverse Effect from a product donated by Americares?

An “Adverse Event” is defined as “any undesirable experience associated with the use of a medical product in a patient.” If any patients that receive Americares donated product experience an “Adverse Event”, notify Americares within 24 hours by calling the Americares Emergency Hotline at 203-658-9658.